Feed it, expand it, inspire it...

EDINBURGH Thursday night is art night with evening openings (until 8) at all the National Galleries (624 6200) and at the new Red Door Gallery (42 Victoria Street. 477 3255). And for a little further cultural edification take yourself along to the National Galleries' After Hours sessions (Thu. 6—7pm), where art and wine meet in happy communion. Call for details of their programme which includes talks. t0urs. discussions and music.

It's also worth knowrng that the Fruitmarket Gallery (45 Market Street, 225 2383) has preview evenings of new exhibitions on the

National Galleries of Scotland

discussions about the latest developments in science. Cafe Scientifigue meets on the second Monday of each month. Check out www. cafescientifigue.org for details. Now. thanks to the dubiously celebrated telly programme. book groups are a bit sexy. And though we can't guarantee love affairs and high drama. they can provide pleasant divergence while you can pretend to be on Late Ftevrew. Check out The List and local libraries for details. Waterstone’s (l3— l4 Princes

Street. 5:36 3034; is starting a special monthly SciFi Group for like-minded androids. The next meeting is Tuesday

Friday prior to openings. It offers free I. wine and. sometimes. ice cream. Everyone's a critic these days. especially for openings and freebies. so get stuck in. If you'd rather be making the art. though, there's a massive range of after-work courses on offer from Edinburgh College of Art’s Centre of Continuing Studies (74 Lauriston Place. 227

6 709. wwwecaacuki.

Enough of all this arty stuff the Filmhouse (88 Lothian Road. 229 5932/ is keeping it real by hosting


Our food critic Barry Shelby can normally be seen whipping up a storm in his kitchen. But how did he get on when he tried his hand at creating a very different kind of dish?

An evening art course is something more than a way to kill a few crepuscular hours. It‘s rewarding, relaxing. therapeutic, collegial and generally fun, although not without its maddening moments. And Glasgow School of Art offers a huge diversity of options, including watercolour painting, black and white photography, life drawing and the intriguing sounding volcanic writing. Depending on the class. you might even be lucky enough to work within the great landmark Mackintosh building.

One of the more popular sessions is sculpture. taught by Marion Smith and Cath Keay. At a recent class. Smith offers a quick wood-carving demonstration. Words can be less important that actions. ‘l’ll just work quietly here and do a bit of defining.’ she says before bashing away with her mallet and chisel. Notwithstanding the unholy force of her blows. there is fine, controlled touch: the blade never skids across the blonde block of timber. chips fly in almost uniform shape. Cool. Little wonder that the number of students who now want a crack at this during the 20-week session has gone from one or two to about a half dozen. Smith and Keay are going to have rustle up a few more gouges and clamps.

The range of student skills at any given evening art class is wide. Some have experience but many doubt their talents and it's this lack of confidence that instructors invariably disabuse. We've all got it: just do it. l’m trying to wimp out of actually pouring plaster into the tidy clay form We made. It doesn't look right. I think. But Keay is having none of it. I will cast a sculpture tonight. No debate. ‘You've got five minutes.‘ she says. OK then. Of course. my reaction at the end of the evening is entirely predictable. Flush with pride. any false modesty swept away with the wood chips from the floor, I'm carefully wrapping my ‘baby' in bubble wrap to safely transport it home. Via the pub. of course.

I Glasgow School of Art, Department of Continuing Education, 767 Fienfrew Street, 0741 353 4596. www.gsa.ac.uk

18 November. (3pm. But if da verse is more your bag. the lovely Scottish Poetry Library (:3 Crichton's Close. 5:37 2867; holds regular talks. readings and poetry sessions with major Scottish poets. starting around 7.30pm. Visit their website wwwsplorg.uk for details. There are also regular book events at the major bookstores. Whether it's the wisdom of Jimmy Greaves or the light—hearted banter of Germaine Greer. they're bound to be here if there's a book to flog. It's a good chance to catch your heroes in these conveniently timed after-\«vork sessions. Your first port of call for details should be our City Life section.

It's a funny old world. but when school was finally and forever out for summer it seemed like the sun would never set. Yeah, well. that was until you realised how goddamn boring a lot of jobs really are. So it you feel like the grey cells are getting flabby. crank them tip again in just about any subject you can imagine Wliii Edinburgh City Council's vast spectrum of courses via the Edinburgh Grid for Learning (http://ces. egflnet/ programme). And for the aspiring scribes. Edinburgh Writers’ Club (7.30pm. Osborne Hotel. 53—69 York Place. (568 2962) offers a supportive enVironment to develop creative writing. It meets every other week With a programme of guest speakers. workshops and competitions.


As if the books. magazines. DVDs. CDs and cafe weren't enough to distract you for at least several hours. Borders Books (98 Buchanan Street. 222 7790/ also hosts regular events. Past Visitors have included everyone from Marc Almond to Tony Wilson and Will Self. A little further along the cultural spectrum are CCA (350 Sauchiehall Street. 3:32 4900/ and the Gallery of Modern Art (58 Queen Street. 229 799(5) which are both open until 8pm on Thursdays. Another option is to take a more practical bent. Glasgow Print Studio (22 8 25 King Street. 5:32 0704. wwwgpsartcouki can help you fulfil your artistic urges. Evening

courses include photography. ceramics and screen printing.

On a similarly self-improvnig bent. the Glasgow Film Theatre ( I 2 Pose Street. 332 8128i hosts a monthly film discussion after its (3pm screening. usually on the last Tuesday er Wednesday of the month. Those in search of peace. tranquillity and quality hardbacks should try a local library (Hillhead. 348 Byres Road. 335) 7223: Maryhill. 1:308 Mt’ir‘y/iil/ Road. 946 2348: Partick 305 Dumharton Road. 339 l3()3. Whiteinch. 74 Victoria Park Drive South, 9:39 7376. Woodside. 343 St George 's Road. 332 I808 and Mitchell. 20 North Street. 287 2999). If you want to be that bit more specific. try a book group. You'll often find them in The List's Classified section or even better. pick a handful of (:lioice tomes and form your own. Different educational furrows can be ploughed as the sun is setting with evening classes at Langside College (:30 Prospect Hill, 272 3636. www.langsideac.tile and Anniesland College (/9 Hatfield Drive. 3:3 7' 3969. l.‘./‘.‘./‘./‘./.t’llill/OS/(I/id. act/lo. Most courses run from 7—9pm. Website design. nail care and shorthand are among the options.


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